© Steve Marshall / Wild Future

Welcome to the Friends of Stocker's Lake Website

This website is owned and maintained by Friends of Stocker’s Lake (FoSL), a registered charity. FoSL exists to :

  1. - conserve, safeguard and enhance Stocker's Lake as a Local Nature Reserve
  2. - help and extend the scope of the work of the warden at Stocker's Lake
  3. - foster public support for and appreciation of Stocker's Lake as a local nature reserve.

Stocker's Lake, near Rickmansworth just inside the M25, is bordered on one side by the river Colne and on the other by the Grand Union canal. It is a place of great beauty and it supports a huge variety of wildlife, especially birds, particularly winter wildfowl. It is owned by Affinity Water and managed by Herts & Middlesex Wildlife Trust, actively supported by local people who are the Friends of Stocker’s Lake.

Within this website you will find details of organised walks and other events on the reserve, news of interesting recent sightings of birds, details of how to join FoSL for a mere £5 per year, and much more.

04
Mar
Work Party - 04 03 18

10am to 12:30pm: Meet by Stocker's House. If you plan to come it would be helpful if you could let Emma Brading know please on 07428 790460.

25
Mar
Heron and Egret Watch - 25 03 18

1pm to 4pm: Join us to view the nesting Grey Herons and Little Egrets. This year we hope to provide live camera pictures via a laptop as well as the usual opportunity to observe the birds through a telescope. Meet on the causeway. Location of viewing dependent on where the birds are nesting. Follow signs from the causeway.

Children under 16 must be accompanied;  Please wear appropriate footwear and clothing. Please bring your own sting or bite medication.

08
Apr
Work Party - 08 04 18

10am to 12:30pm: Meet by Stocker's House. If you plan to come it would be helpful if you could let Emma Brading know please on 07428 790460.

11
Apr
Annual General Meeting - 11 04 18

Our 2018 AGM will be held at 7.30pm on Wednesday April 11th at the Baptist Church Hall, Field Way, Mill End. See our Annual General Meeting page for further details. NB 11th April is the correct date. Unfortunately our 2018 events calendar and our January 2018 newsletter both showed the wrong one.

06
May
Spring Chorus and Warbler Walk - 06 05 18

8:30am: Meet on the causeway between Stocker's Lake and Bury Lake. A morning walk to hear and identify newly arrived spring migrant birds.

Length of walk = 1.5 miles with frequent stops. Expected duration = 2.5 hours. Children under 16 must be accompanied;  Please wear appropriate footwear and clothing. Please bring your own sting or bite medication.

13
May
Recruitment Drive - 13 05 18

A recruitment drive on the reserve to coincide with the Rickmansworth Canal Festival & Environment days. Let This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. know if you are available to help.

All events ...


We are delighted that some activity has been observed through our new offshore camera. Very obligingly herons seem possibly to be about to take up occupancy of a nest on which our camera is focussed. Read this whole article for a sample picture and for an overall update on this project.

Our wildlife camera project is taking shape. A camera has now been successfully installed offshore and the first pictures have been generated. Completion of the onshore component of the installation is imminent and after that we shall be able to advise how you might view the live pictures. Watch this space!

This winter FoSL converted a 1940s pillbox, close to the reserve, into a bat roost. This involved narrowing the gun slots, putting up rough boards for the bats to cling to and erecting a very solid, locked door.

We are now monitoring water voles on the reserve. Water voles were once common mammals in British waterways but their numbers have declined by over 90% due to habitat loss and predation by the non-native American mink.

Recent Sightings

17th - 5 Goldeneye (3 males), 7 Red-crested Pochard (5 males), 3 Kingfisher (inc. one pair), 2 Egyptian Goose

15th - 9 Goldeneye (4 males), 7 Red-crested Pochard, Cetti's Warbler, 4 Egyptian Goose

2nd - 6 Goldeneye (1 male + 1 female on the lake and 1 male + 3 females on adjacent Inns Lake), 4 Egyptian Goose (moving as 2 pairs), 9 Long-Tailed Tits on feeder

19th - 3 Goldeneye (1 male), 2 Red Crested Pochard (pair), 2 Egyptian Goose, Wigeon... PLUS courting Great Crested Grebes and nest-building Grey Herons : Spring is coming!

18th - 2 Woodcock (near feeding station), 12 Wigeon, 12 Red-Crested Pochard (8 male), 8 Goldeneye (4 male)

13th - Water Rail (from Scrape Hide), 3 Goldeneye (2 males), 2 Egyptian Goose

11th - 8 Goldeneye (3 males), 8 Red-crested Pochard (7 males), 3 Egyptian Goose

8th - 2 Kingfisher, 3 Goldeneye, 2 Egyptian Goose, 2 Wigeon, c.50 Siskin

28th - 2+ Water Rail, Kingfisher, 2 Goldeneye (1 male)

26th - 2 Water Rail (in scrape area along the stream), 6 Goldeneye (3 males), 9 Red-Crested Pochard (7 males), 2 Egyptian Goose, 5 Common Gull, 6+ Goldcrest in a single flock

23rd - 3 Goldeneye (males), 6 Red-Crested Pochard (5 males), Kingfisher, 2 Egyptian Goose, 5 Common Gull, Great Spotted Woodpecker

21st - Water Rail (good view at scrape), 5 Goldeneye (3 males)

12th - circa 12 Redwing, 6 Fieldfare, 2 Egyptian Goose

11th - circa 12 Redwing, Water Rail (heard on causeway), circa 20 Siskin, 6 Red-crested Pochard

5th - 7 Goldeneye (5 male), 10 Red-crested Pochard (8 male), circa 6 Redwing, 12 Fieldfare, 2 Little Egret, 3 Kingfisher, 4 Ring-necked Parakeet

Previous sightings and reports ...